Your Life Mission in 160 Characters. Go!

I spent most of my adult life trying to figure out who I really am. Each day I struggled with doing something that seemed impossible: juggle all my various life roles, and give each of these "disconnected" areas my best effort and full attention. It didn't work. Wherever I was and whatever I was doing, I felt that I should probably be somewhere else, doing that "more important" thing.

My frustration grew as well as my desire to find a better way. Looking back now, I see that this problem plagued me because I lacked one thing; I didn't understand my life's mission. That's a mission that combines your calling with your being and weaves its way through all the aspects of your life.

After years of trying to achieve this ideal, I feel that I'm closer now than ever. You know what did it? Was it all the prayers I prayed, the books I read, or the advice from trusted friends? Well, sure, those things helped a lot, but what pushed me over that proverbial edge was Twitter. That's right, Twitter.

I don't know if you are on Twitter, but if you are, you know what the Bio is. The Bio is your chance to briefly introduce yourself to others online using only 160 characters, spaces included. If you haven't done it yet, that may sound like a lot of room. It's not! It's frustratingly short.

And that's what's so powerful about it. 

You see, it's important to me to have all the aspects of my life as integrated as possible. When my feet hit the floor in the morning I want to embark on the same mission, regardless of what day it is; whether it's Saturday and I'm hanging out with the kids, it's Sunday and I'm headed to church, it's Tuesday and I'm headed to work or it's late at night and I'm working on this blog. So I used the creation of a Twitter, 160 character Bio as an opportunity (and a challenge) to further my quest and define that mission.

After a bazillion iterations, this is what I came up with: a one-sentence statement, followed by a few simple role identifiers.

My current Twitter Bio (@garyjweldon)

"Working to help others reach their potential."

As of today, that's the best way I can think to describe my life's mission. This is how it plays out:

  • My career:
    • When I am developing new business opportunities for Staub Manufacturing Solutions, I am helping our company grow and reach it's potential and I am helping the new companies we serve improve their operations. 
  • My Family:
    • When I'm spending time with my kids; whether it's sitting in a deer stand with my son, talking with everyone at the dinner table, playing a game or helping one of them with homework, I'm investing time in them and developing them into who they were meant to be (and having a lot of fun). The same is true when I spend time with my wife.
  • Everywhere else:
    • When I serve at church, when I call a friend, or when I blog in support of my industry, all of my efforts are intended to help those I know move one step closer to reaching their potential.

If I asked you what your life's mission is, what would you say? Would you be able explain it to me clearly? Would it take you a while to talk it through? Or maybe you'd just shake your head and laugh, saying, "I don't have a clue!"

Until you read this, you may not have even considered that you need one. Well, I can tell you, as someone who has spent many years without and now a time with one, you need to find yours.

I can't form your life's mission statement for you. It is an arduous and challenging effort that only you can accomplish. I can, however, offer you a few suggestions:

  • Start by asking yourself some hard questions: 
    • How do you want to be known?
    • What is the legacy you want to leave?
    • Why are you here?
    • What brings you the most joy?
  • Remember that your mission is different from your role. Your mission is why you do what you do and your role is how you do it.
  • If you're a Christian, it will be important for you to understand your Spiritual gift(s). For me, my gifts of Helping and Teaching are foundational to my mission.
    • If your not a Christian, please understand that I feel that being connected to your Creator through his Son is a fundamental part of living a life of joy and purpose. I'm not sure how you find your life's mission outside of that.
  • Look for the convergence of your calling (the kind of work you think God wants you to do) and your being (the passions of your heart, the things you find joy in doing).

Ok, it's your turn: Your life mission. 160 characters. Go!

I'd love to hear what you come up with. Please share it in a comment below. Be sure to include your Twitter handle so I check it out. 

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